Monthly Archives: Oct 2017



And so it’s happening. The filming for the 2018 Sky Atlantic mini series „Melrose“, starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the title character, is well under way. Apparently Cumberbatch had been telling the truth, when he answered the question of which character he really would love to play with „Patrick Melrose?“. His obvious passion for Patrick and the novels right there and then made me curious and I’ve read the whole series of autobiographical novels written by Edward St. Aubyn – Nevermind, Bad News, Some Hope, Mother’s Milk, and At Last – a while back already.

Edward St. Aubyn on Wikipedia

The books’ timeline spans over decades – Patrick Melrose being only 5 years old at the outset and over 40 at the end, with each novel actually describing the events taking place in usually just one day or even only a couple of hours, focussing on the actual event taking place at the time. And yet we see the family’s Melrose_Edinb_2017history unfold in the various flashbacks telling about events of the past that have so obviously impacted the here and now, leading to what Patrick Melrose is going through – from being abused by his father as a child over becoming a drug addict to finally recovering and seeing his way through the net of lies and intrigues of the past, finally to emerge as a different person, not unscathed, but still alive.

In my opinion, the overarching theme of the books is that of dysfunctional relationships – marriages, families, childhoods – dysfunctional lives in general, shining a spotlight on the British upper class in decline, but being in denial about it, self-loathing – it wasn’t long into the first novel until I spontaneously thought „like father like son“.

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Christmas Cards for Anno’s Africa

Anno’s Africa

Anno’s Africa is a UK based children’s arts charity running educational arts projects for children living in slum conditions in Kenya.

The charity was set up in memory of Anno Birkin, a young, gifted writer and musician who died in a car crash in 2001, just one month short of his 21st birthday.

Anno’s Africa has been operating in Nairobi since 2006 and there are currently over 1200 children participating in their workshops and in the weekly clubs run by their sister organization One Fine Day.

Benedict Cumberbatch is a patron of this charity– among many others like e.g. (in no particular order) Tom Hanks, Lana del Rey, Greta Scacchi, Tom Tykwer, Daniel Craig, Dame Judi Dench to name just a few – and has been supporting it for years.

You can read about his reasons for supporting this charity here: Benedict about Anno’s Africa

For more information, please visit Anno’s Africa and Anno’s website

For the Christmas season of 2017, Benedict has agreed to create a Christmas card design exclusively for Anno’s Africa. You can order it here: Justacard Shop

Christmas Card Annos Africa

(c) Anno’s Africa

@cumberlibrary is going to have a giveaway of one set of these beautiful Christmas cards (5 cards w/ envelopes) soon.